Daughter Married a Hindu Revert, What to Do?

29 October, 2016
Q My daughter ran away & got married to a Hindu boy registered marriage. After marriage they told us. We were shocked & told the boy to convert to Islam. He said anything for my daughter. Some read the shahadah & the nikah ceremony was performed. But neither does he pray or follow Islam. My daughter says give us time. They have two sons though she says she prays. I keep telling her it is a haram relationship & to repent & make her husband follow Islam. Please help me as to how I should make Dawah to her husband before it is too late. Jazak Allah Khairan

Answer

Salam Dear Sister,

Thank you for contacting Ask About Islam with your question.

Parents like you who are concerned about the faith and righteousness of their offspring are truly a blessing for adult Muslims.

Even though you must have endured considerable shock, disappointment, or pain when your daughter ran away with and married through the court a Hindu boy, the fact that you eventually accepted their decision, made him convert to Islam, and convened their nikah in order to make their marriage valid according to Islamic shari’ah, is commendable indeed.

I cannot confirm the validity of your daughter’s nikah to this Hindu boy after he apparently and outwardly converted to Islam. For that, you will have to consult a qualified scholar/expert in Islamic jurisprudence. However, if he truly proclaimed the Shahadah (testimony of faith) with sincerity to Allah in his heart, then he has to be accepted as a Muslim. However, the fact that he does not pray at all definitely puts him outside the pale of Islam. And Allah knows best.

Scholars differ about whether a Muslim man who doesn’t pray out of laziness/negligence is a kafir or not, and whether the marriage of a Muslim woman who prays  herself, to such a man, is valid or not. For more details about that, please click here, and here.

Sister, you have to realize one thing: when a mother’s small child grows up, becomes an independent adult, gets married, has children of their own, and lives separately with their spouse as an autonomous family unit, their parents’ way of communicating with and advising them has to undergo a significant change in order to allow their mutual relationship to remain cordial and close.

Now, your daughter’s husband and sons have entered your close family picture, whether you like it or not, and it doesn’t seem like this will change any time soon, even though the Islamic validity of their marriage is certainly questionable.

Consequently, your relationship with your daughter will never be the same again, the way it was when she was single and living dependently with you, because she now has a spouse and children to whom she has major Islamic obligations and responsibilities to fulfill, at least legally so.

There are many marriages nowadays, even among born Muslims, in which the husband doesn’t pray at all but the wife does, and the wife does not want to leave her husband because of their children, nor does he want to divorce her himself.

In such cases, it is advisable to patiently continue calling such a husband to Islam, using wisdom and appropriate da’wah methods.

You have asked what kind of da’wah you can do in order to bring your daughter’s husband towards practicing Islam. Well, as far as I can see, there are two options:

The first method would be based on achieving quick, short-term results. In this method, you could insist to your daughter that she should opt out of this marriage because it started off on an invalid footing, and because it is still invalid because her husband doesn’t pray at all.

In this scenario, you should be prepared to face a strain in your relationship with your daughter, considering that she ran off with this Hindu boy when she was single, without her parents’ knowledge or permission, which shows that she cared more about this boy (who is now her husband), than she did about the feelings or approval of her own parents regarding her marriage to this boy, or even the limits and laws of her religion, Islam.

As a result of such a da’wah approach, it is possible that your daughter will choose to stay with her husband, but knowing that you disapprove of her marriage, she might stop communicating with you at all, or she might distance herself from you to such an extent that her calls or visits to you will become very sparse and few.

As a result, she might become guilty of two major sins: being married to a man who is not within the pale of Islam, and relinquishing her parents or cutting off ties with them for the sake of maintaining her marriage.

I ask you, what will that achieve? How much pain will it cause you to know that you lost the chance to bring your daughter, son-in-law, and your grandsons closer to Islam by being hasty in your da’wah towards her and her husband?

On the other end, it is possible that she might listen to you and get a divorce from her husband, in which case she will go through a very tough phase in her life, as she might or might not lose the custody of her sons to this man.

Either way, as a single mother and divorcee, she will then need your unconditional support and help (emotional as well as financial), and I hope that you are prepared to give her that in case she listens to you and decides to end this marriage with her ex-Hindu husband.

Now for the other approach that you could opt to take, which is more long-term in nature:

You could be loving and kind to both your daughter and her husband, and show them nothing but mercy and compassion, allowing them to become closer to you over the years.

The more they will warm to you, the more they will visit you, and the more you will be able to win their trust. In your interactions with them, you could educate them about the obligations of Islam, and hopefully, with Allah’s help (insha’Allah) not just your daughter’s husband but also her sons will come towards practicing Islam fully in their lives.

No matter which option you choose to take, sister, I would like to give you two important tips regarding your own personal relationship with Allah that will help relieve the distress that you are feeling at the turn of events that your daughter’s life has taken:

(i) The first is that you need to repent sincerely to Allah for any laxity or carelessness that you and your husband might have committed in the Islamic upbringing and moral character-building of your children when they were younger.

If a Muslim child is raised conscientiously according to the teachings of Islam, it is highly improbable that he or she will run off and marry a non-Muslim without their parents’ knowledge or consent. You have to repent, by admitting your own parenting shortcomings and mistakes before Allah in private, and ask Him to forgive you. This will insha’Allah be the first step in resolving the current state of affairs in your family.

(ii) The second important tip for you is to make sincere and lots of dua for the guidance of your daughter and her husband. A mother’s dua for her offspring is one of the fastest to be answered by Allah.

So whenever you find yourself rightfully worrying about your daughter’s marriage and her family’s practice of Islam (or lack thereof), please make sincere and heartfelt dua for her. Allah will answer your prayers very soon, insha’Allah, however you must be patient until they are.

I ask Allah to bring your daughter, her husband and children completely into the fold of Islam and to join you all in true love and righteousness. Ameen.

Allah knows best.

I hope this answers your questions. Stay in touch.

Salam.